To wrap up the History of Pole Buildings, the following excerpt was taken from the National Frame Builder’s Association website, www.nfba.org:
Countless structures are now erected using post-frame methods, including strip malls, convenience stores, restaurants, office complexes, and many other types of retail, public, commercial and residential applications. Schools, churches, fire stations, airplane hangars, and many other kinds of structures may be erected using post-frame design.
Although for reasons of economy many post-frame buildings were and are externally finished using metal cladding, almost any exterior or interior wall, roof or ceiling finish material may be applied. A wide variety of materials never envisioned by industry forefathers are now routinely incorporated into post-frame design. So many types of materials may be used on the façade, one may easily mistake a post-frame structure for another kind of building. Today it makes little difference whether the building purchaser favors the aesthetics of wood siding, brick or stucco; virtually any look is available in post-frame. New concrete siding materials have even made it possible to build a post-frame building that looks like it was made of cement block, at a fraction of the cost. They are aesthetically pleasing and durable structures that are typically easier on the eye than most commercial buildings.
Since the framing in post-frame buildings can be spaced at modular distances to make finishing the interior a straight-forward process, the post frame building has found increased applications in office, retail, religious, public and recreational buildings. Greater awareness of the potential for post-frame buildings in residential housing has also developed. There are excellent examples of post-frame buildings with upper floors or lofts. Concrete floors are found in most commercial post-frame buildings. In some of these buildings, the posts are supported on a foundation wall or on the concrete slab, eliminating the need for the post embedment.
Pole buildings or “post frame” buildings have come a long way over the years. They aren’t just “Grampa’s Old Barn” anymore. Today just about any low rise building can be a pole barn. Take a look around your neighborhood or even your local business community. From houses to garages, churches, airplane hangars and shops or stores – a pole barn is a sturdy, and yet cost effective solution to your building needs. Long live the pole barn!